Derevka wrote a great post yesterday on her plans for speccing in 3.1. She gives a Discipline spec and a Holy spec, with description of the talents she’s taking and a solid explanation of her rationale for doing so.
I’m not quite ready to state mine, although I too intend to have a Holy and Disc spec. I have a rough idea of what these will look like, but in both cases, there are four or five talents that I’m just not sure about. So rather than parrot Derevka’s argument about why some talents are good, I thought I’d write about why some still give me pause.
Discipline (52/13/0) 6 points unspent
Focused Will: Formerly a PVP talent, this now grants an additional 3% crit. 3% more “innate” crit means 3% less crit that needs to be gained via gear. But Khaeli is already well over 30% crit raid-buffed, and I need to look more closely at Ulduar itemization before deciding whether or not these points are worth it. Right now, it’s not; but if everything’s slathered with haste and if I find myself with some gear options, then this talent becomes a lot more attractive.
Grace: The developers themselves have admitted Grace is “clunky” as its benefit can only be maintained on one target at a time. With two points, it increases the target’s healing from the priest by 3%, stackable up to 3 times and lasting 15 seconds. To my knowledge, this talent still won’t stack with a paladin’s Blessing of Sanctuary.
Divine Fury: I do have the points in this talent now, only to unlock access to Inspiration. While both Shadow Priests and Holy Priests benefit from the first few tiers in the Disc tree, Discipline Priests don’t have a comparable benefit from early Holy talents. Their choices are underwhelming at best. 5 points in Divine Fury annoys me as I do not use Greater Heal all that much. That said, however, when you need a Greater Heal, you want it ASAP and even half a second faster feels too slow.
Improved Renew: If there are points to spare in the Holy tree, this is one option. I’m not a fan of Renew, as unglyphed and un-Empowered, it is likely to just be overhealed by another player.
Improved Healing: If I sacrifice some points in the Disc tree — no Focused Will and no Grace — I will have enough talents to grab Improved Healing. Will mana be an issue with the changes to Rapture? If so, this talent might be worth pursuing, although it really only helps with Penance as the other spells aren’t typically part of a Disc Priest’s “rotation.”
Desperate Prayer: This spell has definitely saved my life numerous times, but now that the only limitation on PW:S is the Weakened Soul debuff, I wonder if the spell — a mana hog — will be as necessary for instant-cast-self-healing.
Holy (14/53/0) 4 points unspent
Empowered Renew: While there is some hubbub about the changes to Empowered Renew, I’m still not sold on this slow-ticking HoT. 15 seconds is an eternity in a raid, and while the initial heal provided by Empowered Renew does some of address the problem with the spell, I’m not sure if I will invest the full three points in the talent — maybe one point just to get some up-front heal. I certainly won’t glyph the spell for more throughput on it. Of course, the spell will now trigger Surge of Light, which does make it more appealing. For math on how this spell scales with spellpower, check out this recent discussion on the PlusHeal forums.
Test of Faith: While learning new content, it seems like a boost on those at less than 50% health might come in handy.
Desperate Prayer: Again, this spell has saved my ass, but with the instant-heal option to Renew now, is this spell necessary?